Xiaomi Is Not Launching Phones in the U.S.

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Chinese original equipment manufacturer and wearable equipment upstart, Xiaomi is not launching its phones in the U.S. market but is heard to unveil Redmi Note 2 this Tuesday. Recent interviews with the Asian phone maker giant revealed that the tech company is delaying its entry to the U.S. market for justifiable reasons.

Xiaomi Vice President Hugo Barra said in an interview that they are not entering into the U.S. market soon. Although he indicated that they will test the market by selling accessories on its online store, such as the $15 Mi Band and a range of headphones. The second generation Mi Band will be integrated with a heart sensor, hinted Barra.

Xiaomi places second in the MIT Tech Review list of 50 smartest companies in the world for its growing line of inexpensive smartphones and computer tablets. The maker of price-aggressive mobile devices also gets credit for its e-commerce business which expanded into the United States this year. Elon Musk’s Tesla Motors tops the list for its batteries and the company’s big goal is to remake energy grid for residences, industries, and utilities.

Other tech companies in the list are Apple Inc. at No. 16 for its Apple Pay mobile payment service, which the Review said is “well-designed.” Microsoft takes the 48th spot for its HoloLens augmented reality device.

Some health-related firms are also in the list. Counsyl, a DNA analysis startup is No. 5 for its automated and affordable DNA analysis, which expands from prenatal exams to cancer tests, said the Review. AliveCore is No. 14 for its devices to monitor the heart, which can be connected to the iPhone. Placed 27th in the list is phone-based medicine service, Teledoc, which will release its IPO early next month.

With its fast-growing business pace, many people have heard enough of Xiaomi, as it faces questions about its expansion plans in the U.S. Considering U.S. consumers love top-notch products, and are not as price-sensitive as their Asian counterpart, the Chinese OEM may have a big potential market there. However, Xiaomi is not launching phones in the U.S. for now. Barra’s answer to queries with regard to launching its phones to the U.S. market has been consistent. He cited the same points when asked about it last May.

In the meantime, the company is still looking for endeavors that are more profitable. Trudging on U.S. shores would mean a lot for the Chinese OEM’s international prestige, but VP Barra cited that they need to overcome a series of disadvantages.

The Chinese firm offers full-price unlocked phones, which is not only crucial to its business model, but the only way it sells its mobile phones. Consumers in the United States are used to buying their handsets through carrier subsidies, which means, they are buying locked handsets or those exclusive to the carrier where they got them from. Xiaomi also needs to set up a decent U.S. based customer service which could take years. For now, Xiaomi’s expansion focus is India, where the customer base is huge and the Chinese OEM has already started to penetrate the market.

Meanwhile, Phone Arena reported that Xiaomi will have a “jaw-dropping” announcement on June 30, when the day will be busy in China, as new phones are expected to surface from the Chinese phone maker, together with other Chinese OEMs, Meizu and Huawei. People expect the unveiling of Xiaomi Redmi Note 2, Meizu MX5 and Huawei Honor 7, on Tuesday, 10 a.m.

The Xiaomi Redmi Note 2 is said to sport a 5.5-inch 1080 x 1920 401ppi display, authentic octa core CPU, PowerVR G6200 GPU and MediaTek’s MT-6795 System on a Chip. Main and secondary cameras will be 13MP and 5MP while the battery will be 3000mAh as the device supports 4G LTE. Running Redmi Note 2 will be the pre-installed Android 5 with its own MIUI 6 on top.

Xiaomi is not launching phones in the U.S., but for now, is about to unveil Redmi Note 2. Leaked images of the upcoming Redmi Note revealed a blue-colored frame on the device, which is a bit unusual. The Chinese OEM usually offers its high-end models only in white color.

By Judith Aparri
Edited by Ankur Sinha
Re/Code: Hugo Barra Discusses Xiaomi’s U.S. Plans at Code Conference (Full Video)
VB News: Tesla, Xiaomi top MIT’s list of world’s smartest companies
Phone Arena: Xiaomi to have a ‘jaw-dropping’ announcement tomorrow; image of Redmi Note 2 leaks

Photo courtesy of Kārlis Dambrāns‘ Flickr Page – Creative Commons License